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Posted (edited)

You'll have to excuse the double post here, but I feel compelled to share this.

I think some of the misconception about what is happening in the game is coming from the fact that the TacAI always aims for center mass. The real world is not like World of Tanks or War Thunder, where shot placement on specific 2in by 2in spots on a tank has been developed into some kind of gamer science. In reality, all gunnery (small arms, AT, tank, autocannon, missile, etc) is based on the principle of always aiming for center mass. This is as true today as it was back in 1944/42/insert warfare date here. The modern training doctrine, ie standard gunnery in an Abrams tank, it to ALWAYS laze a target at center mass, and then immediately fire. This is called 'lase and blaze' by gunners. There are many reasons to do it this way, but the most important two are 1) if you do not lase the center mass of the target, you can get a bad laser return, which gives you an incorrect range to target, meaning your shot will miss. And 2) because even in an M1A2 SEP Abrams tank, which has a gunner and tank commander sight that is 1080p resolution with a x50 zoom, it is still hard to pick out individual parts on a tank in combat conditions. 

To illustrate this, here is a video of an actual Abrams on a training range. You can see the thermal sights they are using, the targets and everything. The gunner does not look for a specific part of the target to shoot at, he fires center mass after a quick and successful lase:

 (Btw the comments on this video are pretty hilarious)

This second video shows an actual battle position (BP) engagement on a training range. Note that the tank pulls up into the firing position, scans for and engages targets (fires twice) and then reverses. All in the span of 20 seconds. This is irregardless of return fire in a real life combat situation. Tanks train to constantly reverse out of and advance into firing positions to reduce the chance of them being shot at at all:

In summary: tanks always fire at center mass. Even in good hulldown, tanks still reverse out of line of sight to prevent themselves being shot at at all, and to greatly reduce the chances of them being ranged in on/hit if they are engaged. 

Edit: Ninja'd again, by @Saint_Fuller who makes an excellent point which my post helps to illustrate as well. 

Edited by IICptMillerII
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Well considering every military in history has trained to aim for center of mass, this seems like the nitpick of all nitpicks. If anything, its an indication the game is behaving correctly. Abs

You'll have to excuse the double post here, but I feel compelled to share this. I think some of the misconception about what is happening in the game is coming from the fact that the TacAI always

Tank gunners aim center mass because that is the only practical option. Aiming for specific parts of the tank is some gamey **** straight out of some arcade tank "sim" game like War Thunder, where

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Posted (edited)

Not much I think I can add on top of the last few posts.

We know that CM aims for centre mass and we know that's both realistic and infinitely easier to code than using a thousand variables to calculate exactly where the gunner should aim.

We know that for some German tanks, presenting a hull-down target means the centre of mass is shifted from the effective armour of the hull front plate up to the less effective armour of the turret mantlet and the vulnerable muzzle/gun barrel.

I think the question has gotten to be: how does the player manage that? In one corner we have "expect to get hit, get into the open so centre mass is the better protected hull front"; and in the other corner we have "don't risk getting hit at all, play pop-up from a hull-down position".

There's an argument for both, but I know which point of view I would rather my opponent held.

Two things I'd add would be:

  • Testing is good, but unless it includes ingame behaviour then it's of limited use (and if you fight from a static exposed position with the pause command overriding the (reasonably sensible) TacAI then I'd love to play you). Ideally what we would need are examples from actual games under ingame conditions when players are trying to win.
  • And finally: no one complains about this happening to Shermans. There are elements of this discussion that feel a lot like "Invincible Panzer Syndrome" vs reality. Heavy armour doesn't exclude any tank from basic tactical principles- it's insurance against the worst case possibility.
Edited by Hapless
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2 hours ago, Hapless said:

There are elements of this discussion that feel a lot like "Invincible Panzer Syndrome" vs reality. Heavy armour doesn't exclude any tank from basic tactical principles- it's insurance against the worst case possibility.

I think you are misunderstanding a bit here. It's the other way around: I don't want that my Panther should be invincible when I place it on a hilltop in full view. I prefer that the game reward me for playing tactically correct and going hull down, instead of punishing me for it.

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3 hours ago, IICptMillerII said:

In reality, all gunnery (small arms, AT, tank, autocannon, missile, etc) is based on the principle of always aiming for center mass. This is as true today as it was back in 1944/42/insert warfare date here.

Good post, +1

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It's clear to me after reading the responses that very few in this discussion actually understand what the issue is. I'm not saying tacAI should not aim for center mass, I have already stated earlier that this is exactly what they should do. But the issue is their aiming precision, not the gun accuracy. If we put a laser pointer in the tacAI gunner optics, that laser would point constantly on a 1x1 CM square on the targets center mass. That is the issue.  If we did the same with a human, that laser would be very many places on the target, still center mass, but not exact pixel perfect center mass. This is what makes the AI too accurate, and this is the issue I have been talking about all along.

The hull down statistics is more or less a response to the "hull down myth", which we see doesn't hold up in all cases. And part of the reason for this is the perfect aiming of the tacAI that makes the overall hit zone very tiny and locked to a spesific area, in this case the upper hull.

@Saint_Fullers post is infact supporting me on this. They aim center mass cus they are not precise enough to aim for spesific areas, yet the tacAI in this game is so precise they can consistently hit the ball machine gun mount if the game told them to aim there.

For the "advanced calculations" required to make the AI aim different places is an odd response, the game already handles this stuff with zeroing shots. It doesn't even need any advanced calculations, just make the AI have a random offset from the pixel perfect center mass point, so they aim more spread out, but still center mass.

I already Agree on many of the more obvious and logical points you guys bring up as that's not the issue I'm pointing out.

 

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14 minutes ago, RobZ said:

But the issue is their aiming precision, not the gun accuracy. If we put a laser pointer in the tacAI gunner optics, that laser would point constantly on a 1x1 CM square on the targets center mass. That is the issue.  If we did the same with a human, that laser would be very many places on the target, still center mass, but not exact pixel perfect center mass.

Good explanation. Also, the tank sights might not be perfectly calibrated, so even if you did manage to line up the sight at exact centre mass, you might still be a bit off. I think this would also depend on the distance to the target.

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Posted (edited)

1689596205_pantherhullhits.thumb.jpg.faef8a36de158f73216bdd71662a1c1d.jpg.cbf581adddd47be2a56659fc0ac50261.jpg

Picture from your very own testing.

So. About that 1x1cm square.

Yeah, when they have the time to precisely zero in the gun on an immobile target in the open with a great number of rounds, they reliably start hitting close to center mass on the target. It's to be expected. The rounds still have a decent spread across center of mass, as is also to be expected.

What are you asking for here, the implementation of some kind of RNG where even after the enemy gunner has accurately dialed in the range and found the target, the shells should just occasionally randomly curve to miss your Wunderpanthers anyway?

E: anyway this talk about "I put my tanks in the open to cheese hits by putting the hull armor at center of mass" is not really an issue with the game honestly - yes, a Panther is possibly more survivable in a situation where it sits still in the open because now it can take hits on the strong hull armor and not its glass jaw of a turret, but if you are sitting still and counting on your armor to save you from hits, you have committed major tactical mistakes to begin with

the best defense is not getting seen or hit in the first place (your armor is your last, not your first, line of defense), which is why real militaries fight their tanks in hull-down BP engagements using shoot and scoot tactics

Edited by Saint_Fuller
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Personally, I think center mass was used a majority of the time in the real situation.

The only time I think gunners in the war did anything else was  when they knew they had no chance of a kill doing such a shot.

 

That would mean the gunner would have had to have the knowledge that he needed to do that. (So that means he would have been informed he had to do this from command) or he had experienced it in his unit or from others in his  unit and was still alive to try to resolve the issue.

It also means he would have to be at a range that he could see to take such a shot.

 

But there is accounts of units knowing they needed to aim at weak points on certain tanks.

 

From the writing of German tank aces from 1941, they found they could not take on a kv1 to any extent. word passed quickly and there is plenty of accounts of how they were aiming for the gun to disable it of the tracks to immobilize it so as to be able to out position it.

We also have plenty of accounts from Sherman tankers that knew they needed to aim for the turret ring when possible when engaging from the front, which again could only happen if the range was close enough to do so.

But we also read that they were quickly trained to split their force , with the units from the front engaging and trying to use shoot and scoot tactics  and smoke to stay alive while one or two of their units tried to flank the enemy. All of which only works if you have the numeric advantage to do such a thing. Which at the end of the war they generally did.

Its not that the concept is incorrect for a gunner to aim at something other than center mass. But how and when would it be logical for such a thing to be implemented.

In your test, I can guarantee that a 1000 meters is not when such a tactic would have been used.

 

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As for the last recent comments, I

agree. The precision of the targeting could be the real issue here.

If that accuracy was just even reduced to a larger area so as the impact circle was much larger. That could help to make the results much more realistic. it is also something that might be adjustable in the present programming of the game.

So that would be a good course of action

 

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16 minutes ago, Saint_Fuller said:

What are you asking for here, the implementation of some kind of RNG where even after the enemy gunner has accurately dialed in the range and found the target, the shells should just occasionally randomly curve to miss your Wunderpanthers anyway?

Kind of funny you would say that, just after you said:

3 hours ago, Saint_Fuller said:

Good luck finding let alone hitting comparatively tiny "weak spots" when the reticle is the same size as the entire damn target, with your WW2 daylight optics and fire control methods amounting to "estimate the range and then adjust by observing fall of shot".

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@slysniper dude there is literally a picture right there of a Panther that sat in the open taking a couple dozen hits

even when the Shermans had ranged in the hits are still spread across most of the glacis

like I asked the other guy, if that kind of spread is not enough, what exactly are you asking for here

1 minute ago, Bulletpoint said:

Kind of funny you would say that, just after you said:


Being able to hit somewhat close to center of mass on a stationary target in the open (with a spread of hits still measured in several feet across the glacis) after ranging in with multiple shots =/=  video gamey shooting at specific weak points on the tank at a kilometer.

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5 minutes ago, Bulletpoint said:

Kind of funny you would say that, just after you said:

I think Saint_Fuller’s post shows a major problem in this thread, which is certain people just refusing to give due consideration to  @Bulletpoint and @RobZ’s arguments. The strawmanning legitimate criticisms of the game results in bad counter arguments that don’t address actual points made.

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anyway if you can't grasp the basic tactical principles of how to fight tanks and the reasons why tanks engage from hull down in the first place I'm not sure how to get that across when several other people have also tried and failed to explain that

but to reiterate: the advantage of a hull down BP engagement is in being harder to spot and then range in on (and subsequently hit), while still being able to engage your enemy unhindered, and to be able to retreat back into cover and pop up back again in another position

if you sit in a position long enough to start taking hits and count on your armor to save you, you are failing at the very fundamentals of armored combat and deserve everything about to happen - and trying to cheese the hits by going up into the open (instead of retreating and re-positioning to avoid getting hit in the first place) so you can take hits on your stronger glacis is both an incredibly gamey thing to do, and indicates a failure to understand what the actual mistake is here to begin with

your armor is your last, not your first, line of defense - this is such a fundamental tactical principle that I am not sure how to put it any simpler

and as I am not in any real mood to bash my head against this particular wall any more, peace out

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5 minutes ago, Saint_Fuller said:

if you sit in a position long enough to start taking hits and count on your armor to save you, you are failing at the very fundamentals of armored combat and deserve everything about to happen - and trying to cheese the hits by going up into the open (instead of retreating and re-positioning to avoid getting hit in the first place) so you can take hits on your stronger glacis is both an incredibly gamey thing to do

This is exactly my point dude. The game should FIX it, not rely on its players to not "cheese" the game mechanics. You just admitted that this is an issue than can be cheesed and is "gamey" which is the exact reason I'm making this post at all. The game has to fix it, not the people playing it.

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33 minutes ago, Saint_Fuller said:

E: anyway this talk about "I put my tanks in the open to cheese hits by putting the hull armor at center of mass" is not really an issue with the game honestly - yes, a Panther is possibly more survivable in a situation where it sits still in the open because now it can take hits on the strong hull armor and not its glass jaw of a turret, but if you are sitting still and counting on your armor to save you from hits, you have committed major tactical mistakes to begin with


Given QB and scenario design you are often straight-jacketed into certain positions. Yes in reality you might have more room to maneuver and more time but there have been more than a few scenarios where the alternate positions are a stones throw away from the current position.
 

3 hours ago, Hapless said:

And finally: no one complains about this happening to Shermans. There are elements of this discussion that feel a lot like "Invincible Panzer Syndrome" vs reality. Heavy armour doesn't exclude any tank from basic tactical principles- it's insurance against the worst case possibility.

I think that would be obvious. Shermans rarely if ever have hull superiority whereas there are regularly situations where the German player will have access to tanks that can shrug off rounds. @RobZ winrate test should make it obvious why you might want to do that.




~~~~~~~

Principally from a player perspective none of this is a MUST. However, it is something to be aware of when playing the game. Its a tool you can use to your advantage. Does that mean you drive your tanks around in the open constantly? No. What sort of idiot would do that? But you should be aware of the stats and be aware that it can be advantageous to fight from the open.


~~~~~~~~

4 hours ago, IICptMillerII said:

The real world is not like World of Tanks or War Thunder, where shot placement on specific 2in by 2in spots on a tank has been developed into some kind of gamer science.

Warthunder does have maps where you engage targets 2.000+ meters with WW2 era vehicles and none of the arcade hit displays.

But principally you are talking about the arcade mode and the smaller maps. On the larger maps in the more realism oriented modes what I see more often than specific "gamer science shots" is players bracketing targets for a hit. HITTING and then repeatedly firing wherever they initially hit. Depending on the situation  that often means that you have repeated hits off the center of mass because that happens to be where the first round landed.


~~~~~~~

Overall though I don't get why some of y'all are talking as if folks want some uber pinpoint shooting on the part of the gunners?

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7 minutes ago, Saint_Fuller said:

your armor is your last, not your first, line of defense - this is such a fundamental tactical principle that I am not sure how to put it any simpler

You don't need to put it simpler, because we already understand this quite well. Nobody here is arguing that we want to sit in one position for a long time and shrug off hits.

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Posted (edited)

Also I'd argue that the current habit of the AI repeatedly slamming the same spot is unrealistic.

A PAK36 firing ~10 rounds into the hull of an approaching T-34 would:

- Start walking rounds to other portions of the tank looking for a damaging hit
- leave the position  in good order
- panic and abandon the gun

These are humans after all and unless they had very high motivation levels (and low experience) they would foresee their doom and get out of dodge.

4 minutes ago, Mishrae said:

Made what? I was just suggesting a name for a CM mod

RobZ iirc has made that mod



EDIT:

Also RE: gun damage complaints. Yes their might be some expectation that German armor is invulnerable but I would not totally discount people with lots of hours picking up on the hull-down vs open-ground results but not understanding why they are happening.

E.G. player runs Panther down road and slices through a Plt+ of Shermans because they all aim at the front plate and then they lose the Panther to a single gun hit from hull down. Given enough play time they might intuit that something is up.

Edited by com-intern
Gun damage complaints
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5 minutes ago, Bulletpoint said:

You don't need to put it simpler, because we already understand this quite well. Nobody here is arguing that we want to sit in one position for a long time and shrug off hits.

I know I said I was going to peace out, but apparently I'm just a glutton for bashing my head against a wall.

Anyway this has, near as I can tell, been your complaint though?

"I leave my tanks in a hull down BP long enough that the enemy actually ranges in, and when they start taking hits it immediately knocks out the gun or punches through the glass jaw turret armor"
"Therefore hull down is worthless, it's better to hit the gas and roar forward into the open to expose your stronger glacis and put your strongest armor in the center of the sight picture"

You claim to understand these principles, yet you ignore the immediately available alternate solution to that problem

"The enemy is starting to range in on my hull-down tanks, better pull back and reposition so I don't get hit"

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, Saint_Fuller said:

I know I said I was going to peace out, but apparently I'm just a glutton for bashing my head against a wall.

Anyway this has, near as I can tell, been your complaint though?

"I leave my tanks in a hull down BP long enough that the enemy actually ranges in, and when they start taking hits it immediately knocks out the gun or punches through the glass jaw turret armor"
"Therefore hull down is worthless, it's better to hit the gas and roar forward into the open to expose your stronger glacis and put your strongest armor in the center of the sight picture"

You claim to understand these principles, yet you ignore the immediately available alternate solution to that problem

"The enemy is starting to range in on my hull-down tanks, better pull back and reposition so I don't get hit"

It sounds like you live in the fantasy land of scenario design.

CM isn't reality and its not unusual to find yourself in scenarios where you are essentially engaged in straight up brawls with enemy big guns. If you play CM for a day it would not be unusual for you to see more Tigers than the entire American army did.

Edit:

Hell if you are a longtime CM player there are decent odds you've seen more Tigers in game than were ever produced.

Edited by com-intern
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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, Saint_Fuller said:

You claim to understand these principles, yet you ignore the immediately available alternate solution to that problem

"The enemy is starting to range in on my hull-down tanks, better pull back and reposition so I don't get hit"

If I played real-time mode, that's what I would do. But I play in turn based mode, so I have to find a balance between the chance to spot and hit the enemy tank and my own tank's survivability. For Shermans, that means hull down - for Panthers, it means hull up. At least that's my take on it.

Edited by Bulletpoint
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